iPhone 7 Plus Tip: Save Storage by Turning Off Portrait Mode Duplicates

BY George Tinari

Published 15 Nov 2016

iPhone 7 Plus camera

Portrait mode is that fantastic feature exclusive to your iPhone 7 Plus (with iOS 10.1 and up) that blurs the background in photos. It imitates a nice DSLR bokeh effect seen in professional photography. It’s done using a combination of the two lenses on the back of your iPhone 7 plus some software trickery to stitch the layers of depth together.

Because Portrait mode isn’t perfect and Apple is aware of this, iPhone 7 Plus by default snaps two pictures while you’re in that mode. One is with the bokeh effect and one is without, so you can compare the two and pick which one ultimately produced the better result.

If you shoot in Portrait mode often and don’t remember to go through and delete your duplicate photos, these extra shots can add up very quickly in your storage. The file sizes aren’t small by any means. So an easy way to save storage space on your iPhone is by disabling the feature that takes duplicates. If you’re a frequent Portrait shooter and find most of the time it does its job without the need for a backup, take advantage of this space-saving tip.

How to Shut Off Portrait Mode Duplicates

Turning off the Portrait mode duplicate shot is a very simple process that takes place in Settings.

Just open the Settings app on your iPhone 7 Plus and scroll all the way down to Photos & Camera.


Next, scroll once more until you arrive at the Portrait Mode section. Right underneath that, turn off Keep Normal Photo.


That’s all you have to do. Now, when you take photos in Portrait mode, your iPhone will only keep the photo with the depth-of-field bokeh effect.

This does put you at a risk of taking a crummy photo especially if the subject matter is moving slightly or time-sensitive. In my experience, Portrait mode succeeds far more than it fails, but at times it can wrongfully blur certain parts of the image while keeping other parts in focus. Keep that in mind and remember you can always go back into the Settings to turn duplicates back on at any time.

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